York City Knights Overcome Early Scare To Defeat Newcastle Thunder

Newcastle will be disappointed with how they fell away in the second half, whilst York City Knights will be delighted to progress
17:41, 27 Feb 2022

York City Knights overcame an early scare to run out comfortable 42-13 winners against Newcastle Thunder in the Betfred Challenge Cup, live on The Sportsman on Sunday afternoon.

York came into the fixture with a 50% record in the Betfred Championship, and Head Coach James Ford had hinted he would use the fixture to give some younger players game time.

Newcastle also came into this game with two wins from four, and were looking to put together a cup run in their first year as a full time setup.

Good conditions set the platform for an open game of Rugby League, and the Knights rans in 7 tries, all converted by Jamie Ellis in front a vocal crowd at the LNER Stadium.

East Yorkshire is one of the shorter away trips that Newcastle Thunder could have been handed in the draw, and they looked lively in the opening exchanges. They were rewarded for their early intent when Fullback Craig Mullen found the space to slice through the Knights defence and open the scoring.

Despite playing with the ball for much of the first few sets, the Knights responded well. Liam Harris put in an inch perfect kick, and his Halfback partner Ellis was there to score under the posts.

The game continued at frenetic pace, and the scores weren’t level for long. Mullen once again the benefactor of some sloppy York defending to put his side back on top.

With 22 minutes on the clock, the end-to-end pendulum swing of this game showed no signs of slowing, the scoreboard was locked up again when Ronan Dixon ran a brilliant support line to finish off a fine York move.

The home side took the lead for the first time just minutes later, some brilliant handling saw the ball end up with Matty Marsh, who managed to wriggle over the line at the second time of asking to score.

With four minutes left on the clock in the first half came perhaps the defining moment of the game, as York stretched their lead to 12 points. Newcastle took a risk on the half way line with a short kick, but the field opened up like the red sea for Liam Harris to race 50 metres.

Josh Woods added a drop goal for Newcastle on the hooter, but it was York who headed back into the sheds with the wind in their sails.

Half time: York City Knights 24 – Newcastle Knights 13

The early stages of the second half were disrupted by a lengthy delay as Jay Chapelhow was stretchered off the field, and it was the Knights who started fastest when play resumed.

More good support play from the York Forward pack resulted in Marcus Stock strolling over for the first try of the second half.

We had to wait 20 minutes for the next points in the game as Newcastle struggled to regain their foothold in this tie. The game was put beyond all doubt with 14 minutes left; Jordan Thomson breaking through the line to give Marsh an easy finish.

With their place in the 5th round confirmed, York found time for one more try, shifting the ball wide for Brad Ward to finish with an acrobatic flourish on the corner, just before the hooter.

Full-time: York City Knights 42 – Newcastle Thunder 13

Newcastle will be disappointed with how they fell away in the second half, whilst York City Knights will be delighted to progress in the both the Betfred Challenge Cup and The 1895 Cup.

The draw for the fifth round takes place on Monday night, live on Premier Sports.

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